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Update on 5.5wpg situation

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This is an update for the topic that can be found here.

My dosing regimen has changed to this:

On days 1, 3, 5, and 7, I add:
NO3: 9.53 ppm
PO4: 3.25 ppm
K+: 12.82 ppm

On days 2, 4, and 6 I add:
.5 tsp. CSM + B (1.1 ppm Fe)

I have increased my CO2 levels to remain at or above 30 ppm at all times. Last four tests have given a pH of 6.4-6.6 and a KH of 4-5, which gives me a CO2 ppm in the range of 30-59.

I also added Jobe's sticks to the substrate here and there, because I suspect it is otherwise entirely depleted.

Despite all of this, however, growth is still slow and stunted. Ammannia senegalensis, however, is doing better, whereas Ludwigia brevipes, Alternanthera ocipus and Ludwigia sp. 'Cuba' are still stunting. Micranthemum sp. has stopped growing, as has Broad Leaf stellata. Ludwigia ovalis is losing older leaves and new growth is smaller. Even Ludwigia glandulosa has a few singed leaf tips. Spot algae is forming on the front glass and on the leaves of Cyperus helferi and the Alternanthera.

I think the only possible thing I have left to blame is the substrate, unless I'm missing something. Since the plants are not showing the colors that indicate nitrogen deficiency, I assume that it isn't the problem. There are dead areas and holes in the leaves of some species, particularly Ludwigia ovalis and Cryptocoryne pygmaea...could K be the problem?

Perhaps I could just double all doses and work down from there. This is infinitely frustrating :)
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Wow, that is surprising, it seems you are doing everything right. My tank right now uses 6WPG, CO2~40ppm, TDS=35ppm, and KH~30ppm. I do not dose anything in the water and I have great growth (you can see pictures in my post in the General Discussion). Since you are dosing in the water column and substrate, I would expect even better growth.

I read through your previous post and there was some discussion on Ca. Initially, in my tank I had some problems that I attribute somewhat to Ca/Mg. I don't know really know if the ratio is important, but I think I had to much Mg relative to Ca. I got to the point where I was depositing calcium tablets in my substrate near the plants. It didn't really help, though. Maybe check out the Ca levels, but Tom will probably have a better answer. Cheers,
Tap GH is 10...I very much doubt Ca/Mg is the problem, but I could be wrong. I've never specifically measured what constitutes the 10 GH...could be 99% Mg and 1% Ca for all I know, but I assume it's a mix of both since other planted tanks I've run before never stunted in this way and they had the same source water.
Ah ok. I used to get this curling leaves with my 170 gallon, 2WPG tank (I know you're running higher), after about a year plus of great growth and no change in fert regime. I suspected a depleted substrate too.

Ca/Mg deficiency didn't apply. My GH built up to 18dGH at one point.

I tried the K blocks Ca/Mg theory. Cut a long story short... it didn't work. Mg interfere with Ca? Tried it, but not that either.

Then I read about ppl with similar symptoms solving the problem with traces. That solved it for me. I started dosing traces in addition to TMG's recommended dosage. The leaves went back to normal.

At that light level, I think you need to up your traces. Maybe you shouldn't worry about the Fe levels yet, just up those traces and see how the plants respond.
I'm adding 1.5 teaspoons of traces every week. Now, I'm not sure that's a lot, but sure seems like it :)
Another idea. What I noticed with high light tanks is that I end up pulling the plants out, trimming and replanting every week because of the increased growth. The problem with that is that you destroy the root structure and the plants are never able to utilize the substrate that well.

I've been using eco-complete and have been having problems. I've had success in the past with flourite, so the tank I am going to set up this weekend is going to use flourite. I'll let you know if I see an improvement.
IUnknown said:
The problem with that is that you destroy the root structure and the plants are never able to utilize the substrate that well.
So, the increase in size is only the growth tips...? I would assume the roots would develop growth proportionate to other growth, especially if overall growth is increased. I don't think too frequent pruning is an issue, and I haven't had to do so in about 2 weeks.

Are the heavy water column feeders in your tank faring better than other species? Mine most definitely are. I have an Oriental sword that is clinging to life by a thread.

I was thinking Eco-complete, but I'm starting to hear bad things about it. And it's too darned expensive to gamble on.
Just called my local water supplier.

TDS: 98 ppm
Hardness: 103 (I think this is mg/l but I am not sure how to convert it to GH)
Ca: 17.7 ppm
Mg: 7.05 ppm
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